Tag Archives: Alphonse Yenji

Small Clay Nativity

This native Cameroon village is made of clay by artisan Alphonse Yenji (pronounced Yen-i). The clay is shaped, fired in a kiln, cooled, and then dipped into a dye from boiled eucalyptus tree bark to make the bronze patina.

The 10 pieces include: Mary, Joseph, Jesus in a manger, three wise men, two camels, one shepherd, and one sheep. The tallest figures are 8 inches high.

Alphonse Yenji is sponsored by the Presbyterian Handicraft Centre, known as Prescraft, a nonprofit organization that supports local craftspeople. Prescraft provides employment for close to 800 artisans, 40 percent of whom are women.